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Imprint apparatus, imprint method, and method of manufacturing article

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Imprint apparatus, imprint method, and method of manufacturing article


The present invention provides an imprint apparatus which performs an imprint process in which a resin on a substrate is cured, in a contact state in which a mold is kept in contact with the resin, to transfer a pattern onto the substrate, the apparatus including a stage configured to move upon holding the substrate, a detection unit configured to detect a first mark formed on the mold, and a second mark formed on the substrate, and a processing unit configured to perform alignment of the mold and the substrate in the contact state.
Related Terms: Resin

Browse recent Canon Kabushiki Kaisha patents - Tokyo, JP
USPTO Applicaton #: #20130313744 - Class: 264 401 (USPTO) - 11/28/13 - Class 264 
Plastic And Nonmetallic Article Shaping Or Treating: Processes > With Measuring, Testing, Or Inspecting

Inventors: Naoki Maruyama

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20130313744, Imprint apparatus, imprint method, and method of manufacturing article.

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BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to an imprint apparatus, an imprint method, and a method of manufacturing an article.

2. Description of the Related Art

The imprint technique can transfer a nanoscale fine pattern, and is known as a nanolithography technique for volume production of semiconductor devices and magnetic storage media. An imprint apparatus which employs the imprint technique cures a resin (imprint material) on a substrate while a mold (original) having a pattern formed on it is pressed against the resin to transfer the pattern onto the substrate, as disclosed in Japanese Patent No. 4185941.

In the photo-curing method as one method of curing the resin on the substrate, an ultraviolet-curing resin is irradiated with ultraviolet light while a transparent mold is kept in contact with the resin to cure the resin, and the mold is separated (released) from the cured resin. The photo-curing method is suitable for manufacturing a semiconductor device and a magnetic storage medium because, for example, the temperature can be controlled relatively easily, and an alignment mark formed on the substrate can be detected through the transparent mold.

Also, an imprint apparatus generally adopts the die-by-die alignment scheme as a scheme of alignment between a substrate and a mold. In the die-by-die alignment scheme, for each of a plurality of shot regions on the substrate, an alignment mark formed in the shot region on the substrate is optically detected to correct a shift in positional relationship between the mold and the substrate.

However, in an imprint apparatus, a mold is kept in contact with a substrate through a resin. Therefore, in, for example, pressing the mold against the resin on the substrate, a force acts not only in the direction (perpendicular direction) in which the mold is pressed, but also in the horizontal direction (the direction in which the position of the mold is shifted) perpendicular to the pressing direction. Also, disturbance vibration acts on the mold and the substrate from a structure which holds the mold, and that which holds the substrate, respectively. As a result, the mold is pressed while the positional relationship between the mold and the substrate has changed, that is, pressed at a position shifted from a predetermined position. In other words, even when the mold and substrate are aligned with high accuracy before the mold is pressed against the resin on the substrate, the mold and substrate do not always have a predetermined positional relationship while the mold is pressed. Also, after the mold is pressed against the resin on the substrate, a resin (thin film resin) with tribological properties, that is, a so-called frictional force acts between the mold and the substrate, and this makes it difficult to finely adjust the relative position between the mold and the substrate.

In an imprint apparatus, to improve the pattern transfer accuracy (resolution) while suppressing in-plane variations between shot regions, it is necessary to minimize the film thickness of the resin on the substrate. Also, to shorten the time to fill the mold with the resin, and reduce the force (release force) required to release the mold, a cavity (air chamber) is formed at the central portion of the back surface of the mold (its surface opposite to the pattern surface) to be thinner than the peripheral portion of this surface. Moreover, a soft member is provided on a mold holding unit (holding surface), which holds the mold, along the tilt of the substrate. In this manner, a mold and mold holding unit used in an imprint apparatus are prone to deformation in reaction to an external force. Therefore, the mold and mold holding unit deform due, for example, to the frictional force of the resin on the substrate, and this makes it difficult to align the mold and the substrate with high accuracy (especially, align them in the horizontal direction perpendicular to the pressing direction).

SUMMARY

OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a technique advantageous in terms of the accuracy of alignment between a mold and a substrate.

According to one aspect of the present invention, there is provided an imprint apparatus which performs an imprint process in which a resin on a substrate is cured, in a contact state in which a mold is kept in contact with the resin, to transfer a pattern onto the substrate, the apparatus including a stage configured to move upon holding the substrate, a detection unit configured to detect a first mark formed on the mold, and a second mark formed on the substrate; and a processing unit configured to perform alignment of the mold and the substrate in the contact state, wherein the processing unit performs the alignment by a first process of moving the stage in a first direction in which the first mark and the second mark come close to using, as a target moving distance, a distance obtained by adding to a moving distance of the stage, which is required for the alignment, an additional distance determined in accordance with an amount of position shift between the first mark and the second mark detected by the detection unit, and a second process of moving the stage in a second direction opposite to the first direction by a distance smaller than the target moving distance determined in accordance with the additional distance after the first process.

Further features of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of exemplary embodiments with reference to the attached drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a schematic view showing the configuration of an imprint apparatus according to an aspect of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a schematic view showing the vicinities of a mold and substrate in the contact state between a resin and the mold in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a schematic view showing the vicinities of the mold and substrate in the contact state between the resin and the mold in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is a schematic view showing the vicinities of the mold and substrate in the contact state between the resin and the mold in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 5 is a graph showing the relationship between the variation amount of the distance between a first mark and a second mark as a function of the moving distance of a substrate stage, and the deformation amount of the mold as a function of the moving distance of the substrate stage.

FIG. 6 is a schematic view showing the vicinities of the mold and substrate in the contact state between the resin and the mold in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 7 is a flowchart for explaining an imprint process in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 8 is a flowchart for explaining another imprint process in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 9 is a schematic view showing the configuration of an imprint apparatus according to another aspect of the present invention.

FIG. 10 is a schematic view showing the configuration of an imprint apparatus according to still another aspect of the present invention.

FIG. 11 is a flowchart for explaining an imprint process in the imprint apparatus shown in FIG. 9 or 10.



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Previous Patent Application:
Application method of liquid material, application device and program
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In-filling for additive manufacturing
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Plastic and nonmetallic article shaping or treating: processes
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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20130313744 A1
Publish Date
11/28/2013
Document #
13875435
File Date
05/02/2013
USPTO Class
264 401
Other USPTO Classes
425150
International Class
29C59/02
Drawings
8


Resin


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